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Raggy Charters’ Algoa Bay Festival 2020

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HARRY ECKMAN

Chief Executive Officer

ELIZABETH CUEVAS ZIMBRÓN

Whale Heritage Site Project Manager

MIKI TILLETT

Communications Manager

PATICE TALAUE

Certification Manager

STEFF EATON

Operations Manager

ANDREW SCOON

Sussex Dolphin Project, Project Support Officer

THEA TAYLOR

Sussex Dolphin Project, Lead

DYLAN WALKER

Senior Adviser - Whale Heritage Sites

JEAN-MICHEL COUSTEAU

HONORARY PRESIDENT

IAN LEWIS

Trustee, Life College, UK

ROGER MANN

Trustee, Individual Partners

SUZANNE ROGERS

Trustee, Change for Animals Foundation, UK

Raggy Charters is proud to be the host of such a Whale Festival that is growing in leaps and bounds each year, not one cent profit, done totally on sponsorship (without huge outlay), hard work and community effort. The purpose of the Festival is to give our local community an amazing, interesting and fun family day out free of charge. To educate all who visit, as much as we can, about marine life and the whale migration off our coast. We also emphasise how special Port Elizabeth is to have the migration pass through our beautiful Bay each year and how important it is to conserve our Bay.

To see how the festival grew from 2018 to 2019 was astounding and so rewarding and had us very excited for 2020! The involvement of children from three local schools in 2019 made a huge difference to the festival and of course to each of those children. I am sure that their involvement made them feel like they are an important part of our community and that they too can make a difference in conservation. Their enthusiasm, excitement and smiles on the day was just wonderful to see. 

Covid-19 threw us a curveball and we decided to try to do an on-line style festival, a wonderful learning curve for our small team. With much support from all stall holders and speakers that would have joined us on the day, we started putting everything together.

All became involved with sending us posters and input for the day. It did not take much persuasion to get the lovely, musical, Claire Venn, to join us on the 40 minute hike, with mask donned and guitar in hand, to entertain our online visitors and to assist with live streaming from the lookout in Cape Recife.

With a few minor technical adjustments, the streaming began. The small group became quite emotional at the lookout fort, the calmness that was around them made the event so special, yet thousands of folk were actually with them all the way.(Looking at our stats for the day, we had just under 14000 reach, which was fantastic and far more than we expected). The most joyous part of the morning was the first sighting of the whales arriving in our Bay!

Raggy Charters owner Lloyd Edwards gives a great welcome to the festival

The Raggy Charters team ended the day by taking their viewers on a brilliant virtual whale watching trip in Algoa Bay

You can see more highlights from the Festival by heading to Raggy Charters’ website here: https://www.raggycharters.co.za/article/welcoming-the-whales-to-algoa-bay-festival-2020
Jack Booth
Author: Jack Booth

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